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THE X-RAY PROPERTIES OF NORMAL GALAXIES

G. FABBIANO
Publications of the Astronomical Society of the Pacific
Vol. 98, No. 604 (June 1986), pp. 525-543
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/40678932
Page Count: 19
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Since scans are not currently available to screen readers, please contact JSTOR User Support for access. We'll provide a PDF copy for your screen reader.
THE X-RAY PROPERTIES OF NORMAL GALAXIES
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Abstract

X-ray observations with the Einstein satellite have shown that normal galaxies of all morphological types are spatially extended sources of X-ray emission with luminosities in the range of Lx ~ 10³⁹–10⁴¹ erg s⁻¹. Although this is only a small fraction ofthe total energy output of a normal galaxy, X-ray observations are uniquely suited to study phenomena that are otherwise elusive. In X-rays one can study directly the end products of stellar evolution (SNRs and compact remnants). X-ray observations have led to the discovery of gaseous outflows linked to starburst nuclear activity in spiral galaxies and to the detection of a hot interstellar medium in early-type galaxies. Through X-ray observations we can set constraints on structural galaxy parameters, such as the mass of elliptical galaxies, and we can perhaps get new insight on the origin of cosmic rays and the properties ofthe magnetic fields of spiral galaxies.

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